This next part is hard to describe. Just like all of 2020 it’s a difficult to stomach, it is unbelievable, but I will try. I had approached the ships, I was clearly coming in peace. They were tiny and I was huge. I felt like I was on drugs. Then, I saw a great flash. A giant star exploded in a nearby galaxy. It happened so suddenly, in milliseconds a black hole formed and sucked me in. It felt a lot like being pulled by current under waves. I was rolling and disoriented. I didn’t know up from down. My ears rang and my head was full of pressure. Then…..dark silence. Like the silence of the deep, a hundred feet or more under the water. All I could think was, “what now?” This wasn’t part of plan 19! None of this was in any fucking plan!! I relaxed, there was nothing to do but let the flow take me, hopefully to some kind of surface, some kind of orientation or horizon, some kind of ground.
I don’t know how long I was there. My mind drifted to many places. It all felt real, like it was happening. Yet, I also knew I was still in the deep dark. I wondered where Eric was, where was my Poop Deck, where was I? Drifting….we were all drifting outside of space and time. I was losing track of it all, of the mission. A distant and removed apathy was taking over.
Other beings came over to me and whispered more secrets of the universe. It was like hearing truths you already knew but didn’t have words for. Human mystics had pointed to them for centuries, but as a species we lack the ability to communicate the multi layers of existence—even if we have glimpses of it. It’s like we live in black and white film. It’s our only medium to experience and express, and the universe is not only HD or 3D color, but has dimensions and spectrums we cannot even comprehend. It is surround sound in an infinite echo chamber. Everything is happening at once and nothing is happening at all. The silence is the constant in the symphony of being. One easy truth to communicate as a human in all of this is how small and limited we really are. How primitive and fragile our human created world is, and how much hubris we have in thinking we know anything. A deep grief came over me at the childlike traits our species has, and how grown up we tend to think we are. I wept in the silence, my heart breaking open. At the same time, I felt great love and compassion for all of us. After all, didn’t we all really just want nurturance and safety, love and joy? Weren’t we basically good, inherently bonding people at the core? How tragic humans are in the way we actively push away goodness out of fear.
I was asleep. I don’t know for how long. I felt gentle nudging and bumping on my arms and then face. I still had a body. I had forgotten. I opened my eyes and saw this being swirling around me. They were dancing in space with trails of star dust. They zoomed in circles and tried to get me to play. I think I had forgotten about play. I had forgotten about joy. I felt something familiar, but also forgotten. I smiled. The smile turned into a giggle. The giggle turned into a laugh. I started to move. I started to play. We rolled and spun and hopped and pranced. We locked eyes in wonder and simple connection. It was like I could breathe again. My heart was beating in my ears and I could feel the blood pumping in my veins. I was alive. I was here. I didn’t know where, but I was in this body right now. Life. Being. This. This is what I was here for. I remembered. I remembered everything. I remembered Eric and earth and that weird fucking sailing trip to Sucia. Oh fuck! Wasn’t I suppose to do something? Wasn’t it important? Is this middle age or a deep space hangover? Where did I put my keys?
Then Eric was there. Like a little portal to another world, another time. He was smiling. “Jenn, silly girl, Jenn!” I tried to speak but couldn’t. In this place you can only listen. He told me to swim, to keep swimming. He told me the direction to go. He asked me to go fast. He said he needed me. I swam harder. I swam for love.
Space got colder, and wetter, and not at all like space anymore. I heard a song, someone quietly singing to me. I followed the voice and finally found him. He was different, but I couldn’t quite place why. He wasn’t the same as before, but was exactly how he should have always been. It was like I was seeing the real Eric for the first time.
Eric explained to me that he had been exploring the planet as we dictated in Plan 19 when the star exploded. He had jumped into the sea to survive the blast. As he hit the water, he immediately transformed. He had been exploring the planets oceans ever since, collecting data and looking for me. He had almost given up hope. He said that at least one decade had gone by according to his earth calculations, and a hundred years here. Everyday he would go to this spot and sing a song to remember me by. Everyday he hoped he would see me again. He never forgot me, he never gave up, he kept true to his mission and to me. My heart swelled and I found myself in his arms at last! No matter what happened, at least we were together.
He started laughing. “Silly girl, I think you haven’t noticed something important.” Eric always seems to notice the physical details before me. Which is good because I notice the felt undertones before him. Together we make a complete picture of the world. The robot and unicorn, united again at last. I looked around confused. What was it? In true Eric form, he simply looked down with a raised eyebrow. I followed his gaze and saw it. Like a dream come true, I leapt out of the water in pure joy! I was finally a fucking mermaid!
Eric took me around the planet and started explaining his discoveries. We came to a cove that looked oddly familiar from Earth. Eric pointed out the same creatures that started this whole weird 2020 journey. His theory: parallel dimensions and space/time ruptures from the star blast. My theory: this shit is crazy!
The big question still: what do we do? We had been away from earth for over a decade according to Eric’s calculations. We didn’t save the universe yet, we had really done nothing but survive. When we left the US and Earth, we had Trump in office breaking laws, coordinating with Russians, and tweeting lies amidst cheering crowds of “patriots,” coronavirus was raging with deaths skyrocketing, while the world looked at us in pity and horror, culture wars online and in the streets were blowing up where people were fighting sexism, racism and homophobia while others doubled down in the comfort of their privilege and white ideology, watching Fox News, claiming science wasn’t real, and wearing masks to help others was a hoax or a burden, poverty was rampant and the economy was struggling while we had our first trillionaire, and the planet was going to shit from human based climate change. I mean, can any of us be surprised about space ships, monsters, space/time warps and loops with alternate dimensions and realities after reading the last fucking sentence? What is anyone to do in this mess?